Best of Irish Comedy - SkinnyFest 2

Headliner Owen O'Neill saves the show

Article by Xavier Toby | 14 Aug 2006
Any show purporting to be the 'best of' anything has already set the bar high, and on a busy Saturday afternoon it's always going to be a challenge to put on the 'best of' anything. A large and boisterous crowd are well controlled by both the compere Brendan Dempsey and the efficient and friendly staff. However, with so much going on it leaves the compere little time to present much of his own material. What he does run through is tight, and impressive enough to suggest it might be worth catching his full length solo show. First act Deirdre O'Kane falls a little flat on an enthusiastic audience, beginning well but then losing out with tired renditions on the differences between men and women, and marriage. Apparently, women like shopping. And men don't.

Headliner Owen O'Neill saves the show after a short interval, with superbly paced and plotted stories of growing up in Ireland, along with some risky IRA related material that he carries off excellently. The crowd warm up again to his cheeky and animated style of delivery. While this line-up will be constantly rotating throughout the festival, for an early evening show it's a safe bet for laughs from at least a couple of the acts, compared to single-performer shows that can fall flat if you don't warm to their material. (Xavier Toby)
Best of Irish Comedy, The Stand, Until August 28, 17:45, £8(£7)